Psych Central

Archive for December, 2012

Start the New Year with Possibility Thinking and a Mindset of Success

Monday, December 31st, 2012

It’s that time of year again to start anew, to re-energize your life and to access your brain’s capacity for possibility thinking and energizing the momentum you need for success and happiness in the coming year.

It’s a good time to stretch out of old comfort zones, contemplate changes in your personal life or at work, and replace a problematic habit or two with enriching ones. The sky is the limit.

Let’s be honest, however.

When you think about the upcoming year, New Year’s resolutions and making changes, all in one breath, do you get a weary déjà vu feeling? Or maybe a “been there, done that” moment?

Sound familiar?

If New Year’s resolutions haven’t worked for you in the past, and they don’t for most, it’s likely that the real problem is not you, rather the approach or thinking patterns you are using.

So, first, start fresh, pause for a moment, close your eyes, smile and take a few long, deep breaths.


Holidays: How to Protect Health, Joy & Meaning From Sugar-Blues (Rehearse to Stay Focused), 2 of 2

Monday, December 24th, 2012

It’s not rocket science. To be at your very best, you need a set of conscious choices that protect your happiness, and this often means, as explored in Part 1, taking steps to protect your physical and emotional health from blood-sugar imbalances caused by the food and drink you put into your body.

In this post, we’ll look at a few ideas on how to prepare in advance for holiday gatherings, more specifically, to think with the end in mind by planning your choices in advance, and use your brain’s power of imagination to “rehearse” the priorities you set – so that you may enjoy yourself while also making healthy choices.

Actions without conscious thought? Confusion!

Modern brain-scan technology has made what may be the most incredible discovery of all time about you, that: Your brain is capable of amazing feats. It’s ever ready to help you make continuous changes throughout your life.

In fact, it performs these functions automatically without your conscious involvement, continuously rewiring and reshaping itself.


An “Emotional Reminders” Checklist for the Holidays

Friday, December 14th, 2012

The holidays are when our hope for good will and joy, love and meaningful connections is kindled. Perhaps because of this they can also be times of stress and emotional ups and downs when hopes are dashed. Like it or not, we are relationship beings after all. From the cradle to the grave according to researcher John Bowlby, nothing concerns our brains and bodies more.

The bottom line is this: Most all human behaviors are motivated by our inner hardwired emotional strivings to meaningfully connect with others and life, to matter. As real as inner drives for physical sustenance, we’re wired with core emotional drives, or needs, to love and be loved, to be recognized and valued, to find purpose — and contribute one’s love in life, and feel our love matters.


Questions Are Great Brain Boosters – A Few Fear-Busting Questions, 3 of 3

Monday, December 10th, 2012

We looked at differences between “real” questions and rhetorical-why“s in Part 1, and, in Part 2, how rhetorical-why-loops can (seriously) trip up our brains.

Here we look at questions that can reboot our brains, as needed, especially when it comes to getting out of fear-inducing, toxic thinking patterns spawned by rhetorical-why loops, and back to normal optimal functioning.

In a breakthrough study published in the academic journal Science, researchers found newly formed memories associated with fear can be “erased” by disrupting the “reconsolidation” process that affects the memory content.

Using an MR-scanner, by repeatedly exposing subjects to the same memory without the fear previously associated with it, all traces of fear was dissipated from the part of the brain (the amygdala in the temporal lobe) that stores fearful memories.


 

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